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May 06, 2006

Weekend Lewdness

By Ezra

I'm unconvinced by the "crazy people are better at teh sexx" argument (see here and here). A few thoughts below the fold, where the pure-minded will hopefully not follow:

• Anecdotally, I've met some nutty folks who had no obvious advantages in the bedroom. Conversely, by far the best, and wildest, encounters occurred with well-adjusted partners who felt they could trust me. Which may have been crazy of them, come to think of it.

• What do we mean by crazy? If we're just talking sexually wild, then we're granting the conclusion and the argument is pointless ("sexually adventurous people are more sexually adventurous in bed -- story at 11!"). If we mean schizophrenic, what's our sample size? As Matt noted, I'm betting we've got selection bias.

• More than selection bias, I think we've got a time release thing. Professor Bitch writes that "people who are pretty self-involved and uninhibited don't give a shit what you think of them, so they'll do anything. Whereas when you really like the person, and you're sane enough to have internalized all sorts of cultural norms about what's "freaky," you're a lot more tentative." So maybe crazy folks are quicker to get wild in bed, while the seemingly sane test the waters before breaking out the flippers and vibrating snorkel? I guess the operative question, then, is who gets kinkier in the long-run.

• Finally, I'd submit that sexual craziness from unexpected sources is far better than wild actions from the obviously unbalanced. It's the librarian thing -- having the demure break out the whips is infinitely more erotic than having the girl who's been talking about whips all night do it. The former's an achievement, the latter's exactly what you expected.

May 6, 2006 | Permalink


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I suspect that many people think that 'crazy' means (in the old sense) 'wild' or uninhibited, not really maladjusted - although the difference can be difficult to tell.

"Anecdotally", the wildness thing (as pertains to sex) is directly related to exposure and experience - where experience means repetitiveness. Each step takes you a little further on the deviance spectrum, and some people stop those steps early on the spectral alignment for reasons not clear to me. Kink is whatever you aren't used to doing.

On 'unexpected sources': yeah, but sometimes knowing you are with someone who's pretty far down the experienced wildness path can be really hot too. [thinking of memorable moments, here].

Knowing when to turn off the inhibitions (without drugs, prefered) is a hard thing to do.

Posted by: JimPortlandOR | May 6, 2006 11:03:48 PM

It's important to distinguish between "wild" sex as in unusual sex -- like with whips or costumes or whatnot -- and "wild" sex as in passionate and uninhibited sex.

There is some overlap, but nothing close to synonymy. I've had plenty of the latter with some seemingly non-crazy girls.

Posted by: Realish | May 6, 2006 11:50:50 PM

In the name of all that is still good in the world, enough with "the teh". It's not funny. It's just a strained attempt at being ironically hip.

Posted by: Toast | May 7, 2006 12:05:10 AM

To introduce the ewww factor from personal experience, I would posit that interesting and unpredictable people/relationships can lead to exciting sex. Actual pathology or self-destructiveness or criminality, even if terminal, can be fun. The various exciting dangers cannot be imagined or role-played:when it is a real possibilty that your partner can put you in the hospital or castrate you while you sleep the relationship and sexual dynamics deepen and grow intense. Sometimes. Try sex after robbing a bank:terrific. Not that I ever...

Not recommended. And I am not sure if healthy, well-adjusted moral people can truly enjoy authentic deviance and transgression. They can only pretend to be bad.

Posted by: bob mcmanus | May 7, 2006 12:53:23 AM

"not sure if healthy, well-adjusted moral people can truly enjoy authentic deviance and transgression?"

hard to say........if they participate in deviance and transgression, and enjoy it, then do you think they are still pretending?

Posted by: jacqueline | May 7, 2006 2:16:36 AM

yes, bob, you are right...many are known to have terrific sex after robbing banks....sperm banks!!!

Posted by: jacqueline | May 7, 2006 2:19:39 AM

Why is this a topic of discussion?

For the record, in my large-enough-n-to-do-an-anova-table experience, you do in fact want to go to bed with someone who does not unquestioningly inculcate all societal mores. Perhaps that seems 'crazy' to some.

Beyond that, though, I don't see it.

Posted by: wcw | May 7, 2006 2:49:35 AM

"hard to say........if they participate in deviance and transgression, and enjoy it, then do you think they are still pretending?"

Well, if they are healthy, well-adjusted moral people, then it is likely NOT REALLY deviance and transgression.
What is "deviant" has both personal and social definitions, but "the infliction of pain without consent" covers a lot of ground. Serial cheating, serially forgiven is a complex turn-on for some. Hi Bill & Hillary!


Not to ruin with spoilers, but there is a late scene in which a streetful of people cheer the happy couple. Isn't it romantic?

OTOH, sometimes people aren't so healthy and well-adjusted:Leaving Las Vegas

Is this a love story? A "bad" love story? A "bad love" story? Damfino.

Posted by: bob mcmanus | May 7, 2006 4:49:32 AM

In the name of all that is still good in the world, enough with "the teh". It's not funny. It's just a strained attempt at being ironically hip.

I second this heartily. "Teh" is to the zeroes what "Not" was to the early nineties.

Posted by: Iron Lungfish | May 7, 2006 8:00:45 AM

On the topic of discussion, the worst sex I've had was with my most mentally imbalanced partner. But I suspect all of this is correlation and not causation.

Posted by: Iron Lungfish | May 7, 2006 8:04:06 AM

I'm trying to think if I ever had sex with someone who was certifiable... nah, don't think so. I'm not especially crazy myself (and I note that no one else has even laid claim to their own sanity; apparently, it's just to be assumed), but I try to be a theme park ride in the sack, so... I don't know. What was the question again?

"Good in bed" is surely the most subjective of assessments. I think everyone has a dirty, not entirely safe place in their head - at least from the folks I've been with - and if you're willing to go there without judgements but in the sense of creating a mutually safe space, things can get pretty wild - and fun. I don't know that you can feel safe with someone who is genuinely unbalanced and needs help. It might be an adventure greater than any I've known, but I think I could live better without that level of risk.

What was the question again? :)

Posted by: weboy | May 7, 2006 11:18:36 AM

You live by the sword, you die by the sword. "Crazy" sex is initially intriguing in a sorta Fatal Attraction way, but then you find the bunny simmering in broth and you think "Now THAT'S teh sexy!"

Posted by: Mike E | May 7, 2006 11:36:07 AM

I've never heard the crazy=good in bed correlation spoken of men, just women. And nine times out of ten, "crazy" means "one of those nuts who rebels against restrictive gender roles". However, I think a healthy skepticism about said restrictive gender roles is a sign of sanity.

Unfortunately, sane people--that is, people that are very aware and grasp reality easily--tend to suffer depression more. So there might be a correlation between good in bed and prone to depression . The very things that make people good in bed, like being sensitive to others' cues, are the very things that lead to depression, but I think that's another can of worms.

Posted by: Amanda Marcotte | May 7, 2006 5:13:55 PM

Queue the music: bom-CHICKA-bom-bom!

Posted by: Adrock | May 8, 2006 11:47:26 AM

Geez, you people are making way too much of this.

The simple point is that those thought of as 'crazy' tend to really put their freak on the first time you have sex with them. One of the reasons we might call them crazy is because they are uninhibited. It's not about relationships because you won't have a relationship with a nut.

Whereas ‘relationship people’ early in the relationship tend to leave their freak at home resulting in unspectacular sex.

Posted by: Don | May 8, 2006 6:11:08 PM

Amanda has a good point - I don't know how many times I've heard stories of a guy w/the "crazy ex-girlfriend" or "crazy girlfriend." And when asked "well why X with her if she was so crazy?" the answer is always "well she was super hot and the sex was amazing."

In those stories, the the crazy tag was used to describe extreme behavior due to lack of trust/jealousy. I had a roommate who would ask me to drive home past her boyfriends house. If he hadn't taken her call and she thought she saw a light on I had to talk her out of pounding on his bedroom window at 230am - she'd be described as "crazy" but she was just insecure. And generally people who don't mind making spectacles of themselves (she also threw herself on his car once to keep him from driving off) are also very passionate, expressive and uninhibited and that carries over to sexual encounters.

Posted by: JenM | May 8, 2006 6:50:41 PM

teehee I like sex!

Posted by: tehott!!! | May 9, 2006 12:29:04 PM

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